Mac trouble

Dear Lazyweb, how can I stiffen a laptop hinge, or prop it open?

I have a new laptop, from my new Lord and Master.  Arrived today.  It’s a 15″ MacBook Pro, which makes it not unlike a bigger, quieter, and updated version of my old macbook.

On the plus side are the reasons for getting a macbook: hardware that Just Works a whole lot better than other laptops I’ve encountered, and a unix-family operating system without having to install it over what the company supplied.  On the minus side, several niggles, and one unexpected problem I’m scratching my head over.

The least of the niggles is that it’s US-oriented, with a US keyboard, and adapted for US power points: the latter makes it a pain to use here, though fortunately I do have a ‘universal’ adapter.  Slightly more bothersome: the metal finish is rather unpleasantly cold to the touch while using it.

The big and unexpected problem is that the screen’s hinge is too loose.  Not a problem when it’s resting on a flat surface, but it means I can’t hold it up vertically while lying on my back, a position I use quite a lot because it’s one I can sustain without back or neck pain.  That’s going to make it particularly hard to travel with when I go to places that don’t have a desk and chair I can sit at for sustained periods.

Any suggestions for how I can get it to stay open appreciated.

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Posted on September 6, 2011, in mac. Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. your best bet will be to take it to an apple store and get them to repair it. The repair may be free of charge.

    http://support.apple.com/kb/TS2948

    http://www.ifixit.com/#0-product,repair,question,-hinge%20macbook

  2. Hmm, guess I wasn’t clear enough. It’s not loose in the sense of broken, just in the sense of not sufficiently stiff to counteract gravity (as every previous laptop has been).

    But thanks for the suggestion. I might try our local ex-mac shop, who are a friendly bunch. Though I’d have to pay out of my own pocket: they’re too decent to be Apple-approved, and too unofficial to try on expenses, and I’d feel too guilty imposing on them for nothing (if they offer that).

  3. If the hinge isn’t stiff enough to counteract gravity, then it is broken, not just in need of adjusting. I’ve had Macbooks and Powerbooks that have loosened over time, and after 2-3 years they are like that, but certainly a relatively new one shouldn’t have this problem.

  4. I could take it to the Mac Shop in Exeter if you want – it’s close to my office…But they’d probably need “proof of purchase” to do the repair under warranty.

    Why not give them a call on 01392 316600? If they can do something useful with it, I’ll happily take it in for you.

    Agree with Andrew though – sounds like it’s broken.

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